Oct 4, 2012 4:00am EDT
presidential debate started with a hand shake and a smile between president obama and his republican challenger, mitt romney. then, it quickly focused on the economy. >> 5 million jobs in the private sector created. the auto industry's come roaring back. and housing has begun to rise. >> i know what it takes to get small business growing again, to hire people. >> reporter: romney was aggressive most of the night. but his comments about the 47% had taken a toll on his campaign. the president never brought up those comments. and romney tried to move past them. >> under the president's policies, middle-income americans have been buried. they're just being crushed. i will not, under any circumstances, raise taxes on middle-income families. >> reporter: the president challenged his rival, saying that romney cannot keep his goal of cutting taxes and not add to the deficit without hurting the middle-class. >> now, five weeks before the election, he's saying his big, bold idea is never mind. >> reporter: other topics included medicare reform and the president's health care reform law. while there wasn'
Oct 5, 2012 4:00am PDT
absolutely believe, however, that my life has shown that i care about 100%. >> reporter: president obama, meanwhile, is trying to rebound from what many believe was a lackluster debate performance. before a crowd of 30,000 in madison, wisconsin, yesterday, the president suggested romney's performance was just an act. >> i met this very spirited fellow who claims to be mitt romney. but i know it couldn't have been mitt romney. because the real mitt romney's been running around the country for the last year, promising $5 trillion in tax cuts that favor the wealthy. >> reporter: obama campaign advisers were even more blunt, accusing romney of being dishonest on the debate stage. but some of the president's supporters and liberal pundits are baffled by what they saw as a passive performance. >> i felt like he should have been more aggressive. >> i don't know what he was doing out there. he had his head down. he was enduring the debate, rather than fighting it. >> reporter: president obama could have new worries today when the monthly job numbers come out. economists predicted the unemploymen